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quilt_mommy

My First Attempts at a Cottage Garden - Lots of Photos

quilt_mommy
11 years ago

I have been trying to get the cottage garden feeling for the past three years in my front yard garden, what began as just a few tulips the first spring we moved in. There is still much to be done, many things I would like to change and rearrange, but here are a few shots of my first garden, and my first attempt and creating a cottage garden. I took these photos last spring and summer, sorry they are so big, I don't know how to size them down! :)

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Comments (18)

  • natalie4b
    11 years ago

    Beautiful, and very cottagy! Great job! Love the white fence, too.

  • plantmaven
    11 years ago

    Yep, very "cottagy". I envy your fox glove. We can grow them here, but they are treated like an annual.

    Kathy

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  • quilt_mommy
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Thank you! I am really getting geared up for this year...everything is really filling out and will even need some thinning this year. I didn't know how aggressive that gooseneck would be when I put it in, I adore the foliage but it's taking over.

  • Lilyfinch z9a Murrieta Ca
    11 years ago

    Wow I really think you did a great job! What is the plant in the first picture? I've seen it in peoples yards but not at a nursery. I think it looks so cottagy!
    And the achillea looks like such a pretty plant.
    Last year I planted a couple clumps but they were just establishing themselves. Do you like the plant? Does it attract lots of butterflies like I read? Spread a lot?
    I look forward to seeing more of your pictures this summer! :)

  • quilt_mommy
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Thank you lilyfinch!

    The purple/white plant in the first picture I bought at a yearly plant sale about two springs ago for $1.00. It was three stems of the plant the first year I planted it, and as you can see it really spread out! It has actually been driving me crazy that I cannot remember for sure the name of it, but I believe I bought it labeled as a "money plant". Money plants are supposed to get little silver dollar papery looking seed pods but I do not to date remember these ever getting those. My Mother keeps telling me to hold out because money plants are biennial and don't get the seed pods until the second year...so we will see because this will be year three that I've had it in my garden! I think it MAY actually be "dame's rocket", a wildflower that grows prolifically in this area and can often be found in huge drifts along the countryside and in ditches! Lol* If it IS dame's rocket it can be invasive in some areas and I think it's even illegal in certain states. However, you aren't too far from me, Pittsburgh is about 3 hours away so I think you'd be fine to plant this in your garden as long as you don't mind a mildly aggressive reseeder. It's easy to rip out if you don't like it. It does spread and reseed very well, but I absolutely adore it. As a matter of fact I'm hoping to dig some up and plant it in a few other parts of the garden this year. I will post pictures if those silver dollar seed pods ever appear! ;)

    Yes the achillea I LOVE!!! It does spread like mad - the picture you see is the second year. I planted it the spring prior to taking this picture...all three clumps came from ONE stem of the plant. ONE little plant! LOL* I dug up some last summer and planted it in the back, it didn't like the transplant but I hope that it pulls through and fills out as nicely as these did.

  • lindakimy
    11 years ago

    So pretty!

    I think you are right about the dames rocket. The leaves look more like that than like lunaria.

    I envy your yarrow and it gives me hope. I planted several that I grew from wintersowing last year. Only this spring are they beginning to look promising. I do hope they will be as charming as yours.

  • aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada
    11 years ago

    Very pretty and very cottagey. Hesperis matronalis (Dames Rocket) is a perennial, Lunaria annua (Money Plant) a biennial, they flower and set their seedpods in the second year. If you google (images) you will see their leaves are totally different. I have both in my garden, the birds scatter the Dames Rocket seed around as it is a common roadside weed here but it is also a perennial sold in garden centers.
    I leave it if it's not in the way, I like the flower and their scent. I think you will find although a similar flower the money plant's flowers are usually a darker mauve. Both these plants can also have white flowers. Money plants both the white and mauve flowering also come with variegated leaves, the white flowering variegated leafed variety is outstanding in a all white/moon garden.

    Annette

  • quilt_mommy
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Annette - Thank you ! I did noticed that about the leaves when I looked this plant up, that's why I'm near positive it's got to be Dame's Rocket. You know how common names are limited sometimes regionally though? I really think that people in this area mistakenly call this money plant, because I'm pretty positive that is what I bought this as. My parents call them money plants too. But as I said I have never seen the silver dollar seed pods that money plants are supposed to get.

    Oh well, you know how cottage gardeners love their weeds! This is one weed I love having in the garden! LOL* :) I remember being so surprised the first time I saw Queen Anne's Lace in someone's cottage garden online. It was STUNNING too alongside brilliantly colorful perennials...but in my neck of the woods it's considered a weed. A very pretty weed though. :)

  • luckygal
    11 years ago

    Sooo pretty! You definitely have a Cottage Garden that will get even prettier as you go along!

    Your first pic is Dame's Rocket and you're right, it can be invasive. I deliberately planted it despite that as it's a pretty plant. You can ID it as it has 4 petals, unlike the similar Phlox which has 5 petals. I just deadhead it a lot and weed out extra plants to keep it in check. In fact I probably need to let more grow. Your large clump is lovely.

    I like your dark burgundy iris in the background and have a similar one.

    Your yarrow will also spread prolifically. I started with one red yarrow and now have a large swath - which I love. I do weed out the paler pink and white ones as they start to bloom and keep the darker pink/cerise/red ones. I'm not sure but I think they cross-pollinate with the wild white yarrow we have and I don't want it to take over.

    Here is a link that might be useful: info on Dame's Rocket

  • trailrunner
    11 years ago

    Very very nice. I love the cottage look. Not many of the things you have will work for me but I love the grapevine wreath on the fence and I have lots of picket and lots of grapevine so I am getting ideas. Thanks for posting such great pics. c

  • Calamity_J
    11 years ago

    I have HOPE now thank you!!!ha! All my baby plants will someday be a decent size.I thought that plant you all are talking about was plox, but really, I don't know most plants names...and I usually mispronounce them too!

  • Thyme2dig NH Zone 5
    11 years ago

    What a great job! I especially love seeing the red flyer wagon in so many pictures. It's one of my indispensible garden tools too! Did you just add that one small section of white picket fence into the garden (is it a bench)? It's such a great idea and a nice architectural element to give it a real cottage feel.

  • hosenemesis
    11 years ago

    Beautiful!

  • quilt_mommy
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Thank you all so much for all of the nice compliments! I apologize for not responding sooner - I'm a week away from having baby number three and things have just gotten overwhelming over here!

    thyme2dig - thank you so much! The white picket fence is a bench, you're right! Lol* My Dad built it for me as a gift for my garden and when I first brought it into the garden I kept pansies on it...but I soon learned how quickly perennials fill out and also how TALL some fo them grow! I may have to move that bench this year or else move some of the plants around it.

    calamity_j - Oh I mispronounce a lot of plants too and am still a bit green when it comes to gardening, lol*, no pun intended. Dame's Rocket does look a lot like phlox, but spreads much more agressively and also it blooms in the spring while phlox blooms in the summer. Phlox also comes in lots of pretty colors that I love but I have never seen Dame's Rocket in anything other than that pretty lavendar shade. I love them both though!

    trailrunner - thank you! I tend to go for really easy common plants for my area. While we don't have quite as long of a growing season as they do down south, we're able to enjoy some of the cooler weather plants longer than the warmer zones here, so that is a nice trade off.

    luckygal - Thank you for the info on Dame's Rocket...I love it even though it's a weed. LOL* Sometimes I still can't believe I paid to put it in, but it was only a dollar so at least I didn't break the bank. I sure love those burgundy irises...they are probably my favorite irises in the garden. Those were scraps that my Husband's Grandmother had thinned from her garden and left for dead...I love to rescue people's tossed plants! Lol* I also dug up a bunch from my Dad's house that he didn't want anymore and cannot wait to see what those look like. I have never seen them bloom so it will be like Christmas!

  • kathi_mdgd
    11 years ago

    I agree with everyone,you've done a wonderful job and it does look cottagy.I love the foxgloves but don't have a lot of luck with them here in S.Calif.Don't know if it's me and my soil or the temps,but i've tried them a few times,without much success.

    I do try lots of things that they say won't grow here,and have had some success,tulips come to mind,and i did get some blooms from them,and enjoyed them while they lasted.Hope that is a money plant,they make for nice arrangements when the pods dry.
    TFS
    Kathi

  • pippi21
    11 years ago

    What a great start on the cottage look. I wintersowed a bunch of white foxgloves because the seeds were rec'd from the swap or rec'd seeds for postage,etc. What variety of garden phlox is that in the first picture? Is the blue spike flower a variety of Salvia, but one looks like Salvia and another looks like Blue Fortune Agastache. not sure if I spelled the last plant correctly. I'm determined to try Candy Mountain or Foxy foxglove. I have a feeling the white foxglove won't bloom the first year but I have read where Foxy variety does bloom first year it is planted. If you plant in the Fall, I understand they will bloom in the spring. Is that what you have read or know for a fact? Do you have a wish list on your page? Do you save your seeds from your plants or let them reseed so you'll have more?
    I wintersowed some yellow yarrow and my neighbor planted hers about 3 yrs. ago and it took over most of her bed and I told her I'd take some off her hands and last night I was over there and noticed that the yarrow is gone and 3 rose bushes have been planted in place of it. What's that ole saying, "You snooze, you lose!" Oh well, that's the way it goes. I have the yellow to start out with. I may end up doing the same thing she did if it is successful.

  • memo3
    11 years ago

    Your garden is very pretty and very cottage-y. We have Dames Rocket here in my area, usually growing in rich loamy soil in partial shade. Our is deep purple in color. I have tried to transplant it into my garden several times but it just never takes so I am jealous that you've gotten it to grow successfully. I also grow several varieties of achillea, the dark gold is a thug but easily pulled. There is a newer variety that is a pretty but more subdued yellow and it's gorgeous in bloom. I hope that one spreads it's self around a bit, I'd like it in more places. Thanks for sharing your pictures. Oh! and welcome to the forum from one quilting gardener to another ;)

    MeMo

  • quilt_mommy
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Oy vey my seasons are terribly off this year! After having a baby I didn't do too much gardening, aside from a ladder I covered with morning glories. I planted some bulbs that didn't do a whole lot but hopefully will next year.

    Kathi - Thank you so much! The foxgloves seem to do really well here. The original plants are about bloomed out and I don't expect them to return next year. They have reseeded all over though and this spring I think had about 11 babies that bloomed from that original three foxgloves I planted. They are all white though, but I adore foxgloves and welcome any color baby that decides to grow in my garden. :)

    pippi - So sorry for taking literally MONTHS to respond! I have a now six month old that I pretty much devoted the summer to. Now it's fall and my mind is turning to winter sowing and I'm hoping to find the time to garden more next year. I have a 9 year old who will have to babysit so Mom can get some gardening done. Here it gets a bit too cold to plant seeds in the fall for next spring, but I do summer sow and plant small plants that go dormant and return larger the following year. All of the foxgloves except for one that I have now were sale plants I purchased from Walmart for a couple bucks after they were done. They returned beautifully, though I doubt those original plants will come back next year. They did leave lots of babies and I'm thrilled with that! I agree the yellow yarrow is pretty aggressive, actually ALL of the yarrow I have is pretty hardy and aggressive but managable. I love it and have divided it and put it all around my house and barns.

    Memo - Thank you so much! I am working on it. The Dames Rocket grows as a weed out here and my Mom sort of laughed at me when I actually PAID for it and put it in my garden!!! LOL* It is gorgeous though and one of my favorite things. I did not return this spring, I'm sad to say! It was outdone by some overzealous daisies and rudbeckia that I will be thinning out next spring. The goosneck while pretty is a real nightmare and I'm planning on pulling out all of that next year too.

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